MSI will debut (opens in new tab) its take on screwless M.2 SSD fixings in upcoming 600-series motherboards for AMD’s Ryzen 7000 Zen 4. The system relies on the combination of an MSI Screwless M.2 Shield Frozr, plus EZ M.2 Clips. MSI’s patent-pending designs require no tools or screws.
MSI first showcased the M.2 slot (opens in new tab) design back at Computex 2022. Twitter leaker chi11eddog (opens in new tab) shared a set of authentic-looking images, where you can see an overview slide with various claims by MSI about its Screwless M.2 Shield Frozr’s ease of use. In addition, a couple of illustrations show how to use the install system and how the spring-loaded latch works.
On upcoming MSI motherboards with Screwless M.2 Shield Frozr heatsinks, a series of pre-fixed posts will be available to facilitate easier M.2 SSD/heatsink installation. Readers who have installed bare M.2 SSDs will be aware of pivoting in the M.2 stick and then fixing down the other end with a screw. It isn’t tricky when stacked alongside other PC building tasks, but MSI engineers/marketers must have decided it is a problem.
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With the new MSI system, you first insert the M.2 teeth in the motherboard socket at a slight angle. Then, pushing down the other side of the SSD, you will bring the u-shaped cutout in line with an MSI EZ M.2 clip. Turn this clip to lock the M.2 SSD down flat. It is a lot like the Asus ROG M.2 latch fixing system.
MSI doesn’t stop there, as you still have its M.2 heatsink to install – something that will become all the more important with the high-speed PCIe 5.0 SSDs due to debut on next-gen PC platforms.
For the heatsink, MSI has another screw-less, tool-less fixing method, dubbed MSI Screwless M.2. It is somewhat similar to the initial M.2 SSD install. First, users line up and insert the fixing post into the back of the heatsink, then pivot it down. Once they feel the heatsink is touching the fixing bases beneath, it is simple to push the spring-loaded slots holes at the far end to line up with the posts beneath, and they will click into place with continued downward pressure.
MSI’s Computex 2022 video shows a company exec making this new “easiest” M.2 SSD install look fiddly and difficult to use. Perhaps, since that video, the fixing system has been improved a little, made more fool-proof. We will highlight this fixing system in new motherboard reviews when they arrive.